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Jsl Vol 2-N4

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The Journal of School Leadership is broadening the conversation about schools and leadership and is currently accepting manuscripts. We welcome manuscripts based on cutting-edge research from a wide variety of theoretical perspectives and methodological orientations. The editorial team is particularly interested in working with international authors, authors from traditionally marginalized populations, and in work that is relevant to practitioners around the world. Growing numbers of educators and professors look to the six bimonthly issues to: deal with problems directly related to contemporary school leadership practice teach courses on school leadership and policy use as a quality reference in writing articles about school leadership and improvement.

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Letter from the Editor

ePub

Empowerment is a dominant theme in all types of organizations including business, industry, and service organizations. Current interest in empowerment has filtered to school organizations and school participants (Lightfoot, 1986; Maeroff, 1988). School restructuring has, as one of its components, the empowerment of teachers, administrators, and students (Murphy and Evertson, 1990). In fact, the restructured school paradigm proposed by Murphy and Evertson (1990) portrays empowerment as an integral part of that reform.

Even so, most of what has been written about empowerment has been conceptual. It is time to address teacher empowerment through systematic inquiry.

HOW HAS IT BEEN CONCEPTUALIZED IN THE LITERATURE?

Lightfoot (1986) defined empowerment as the opportunities a person has for power, choice, autonomy, and responsibility. Maeroff (1988) suggested that teacher empowerment consists of granting teachers greater status and increasing their knowledge base. Rappaport (1987) and his colleagues have described empowerment as a construct that ties personal competencies and abilities to environments that provide opportunities for choice and autonomy in demonstrating those competencies.

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Employment Discrimination in Education Related to Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection: Legal Perspectives

ePub

WINI M. O’BRIEN1

ABSTRACT: Leaders in education must be prepared to avoid discrimination against the increasing number of employed individuals with HIV/AIDS. The purpose of this article is to provide a relevant literature review of protections for disabled employees. Statutory and case law is explored, including the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. A case study in higher education is presented as an application of the review.

Coping with Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is one of today’s circumstances and a major workplace issue. Whitty (1989) views AIDS as “a litmus test for work rights, business ethics, and the humanization of the workplace” (p. 186). Educators, human resource professionals and institutional leaders must respond to the test. Administrators in education have a fourfold responsibility regarding HIV/AIDS:

This discussion focuses on the third area of responsibility, that of managing and protecting personnel from discrimination, which consequently affects the management and protection of students. The article will explore major legislation affecting discrimination in employment, relevant case law in education, then present a case study as a practical application of the review.

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Educational Administration Research, Practice, and Preparation: Lessons from Woodworking and American Indian Philosophy

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A. WILLIAM PLACE1

ULRICH C. REITZUG2

ABSTRACT: There has been a continuing debate in scholarly circles about appropriate modes of inquiry. The traditionally dominant mode of inquiry, the quantitative paradigm, has in recent years been challenged by an alternative mode of inquiry, the qualitative paradigm. This paper does not rehash the scholarly debate in which previous scholars have engaged, but rather (a) presents an alternative philosophical framework, that of the American Indian, through which to view the quantitative-qualitative debate, (b) discusses practical considerations of the debate, and (c) examines implications for research, practice, and educational administration preparation programs.

There has been a continuing debate in scholarly circles about appropriate modes of inquiry. The traditionally dominant mode of inquiry, the quantitative paradigm, has in recent years been challenged by an alternative mode of inquiry, the qualitative paradigm. Scholars have distinguished between the philosophical tenets of the paradigms (positivism interpretivism)* and the corresponding research methodologies (quantitative, qualitative; Howe, 1988). Some research scholars have argued that philosophically the two modes of inquiry are incompatible (Lincoln and Guba, 1985; Smith and Heshusius, 1986), but that methodologically both modes of inquiry could be represented in a single study (e.g., Gage, 1989; Howe, 1988; Howe and Eisenhart, 1990). Some researchers have taken this advice to heart and have conducted studies that incorporate both quantitative and qualitative perspectives (e.g., Rossman and Wilson, 1985; Greene and McClintock, 1985).

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The “Foxfire” Principal: Managing the Restructured School

ePub

ROBERT A. ROTHBERG1

MARIE SOMERS HILL1

ABSTRACT: The Foxfire Teacher Outreach Network has expanded teacher thinking and practice. The principal must possess complementary attitudes and actions for a school to become a setting in which change can occur, staff and students can flourish, and risk taking is valued. This article explores the challenges that administrators face when they create student centered environments.

Twenty-five years ago, Eliot Wigginton, a recent Cornell University graduate, began teaching English in a north Georgia high school. Lack of success in the classroom led him to discover ways to bridge cultural gaps between his background and the mountain culture he encountered. He developed a process whereby students interviewed members of the community to record and document local folklore. Findings were initially published in student-developed magazines. Eventually, Doubleday published nine Foxfire books with worldwide sales in excess of 3 million copies. From their success, cultural journalism as a technique for teaching language arts became very popular in the 1970s.

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Board Members: Informing Them Begins with Knowing Who They Are

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JAMES A. MARTIN1

RICHARD H. MARTIN1

ABSTRACT: Knowing who school board members really are is paramount to finding the most effective ways of communicating with them. This article details a demographic study of all school board members in West Virginia. It explores their personal characteristics, motivations, and communication preferences. Given the ever­expanding body of educational literature and research, a knowledge of school board members and the best ways to reach them is invaluable to anyone who would seek to influence their decisions. The data, procedures, and implications of this study should prove useful in so doing.

A school district consists of a multitude of complex interactive components. It takes a great deal of time, effort, and energy to comprehend the operation of even a small school system. Board members want to do a good job directing school systems; however, no one is born with the innate knowledge that is necessary to be an effective school board member. Consequently, board members find themselves deluged by a sea of information flowing from well-meaning school administrators, state school board executive secretaries, and national associations of various types all designed to prepare or assist the local school board member to perform his/her role more effectively. It is, therefore, incumbent upon those involved in educational research to present their findings to board members in ways that are meaningful to them. Even a cursory review of basic communication theory (Shannon and Weaver, 1949; Schramm, 1955; Davis, 1967; Andersen, 1968; Gibson, Ivancevich and Donnelly, 1976; Bowers, 1976) suggests that the personal characteristics of communication recipients play a role in the way they process and interpret information. Krone, Jablin and Putnam (1987) have specifically studied the impact of conceptual filters such as personality attitudes, values, cognitions, interests and motivational needs in the formation, transmission, reception and interpretation of ideas. Additional research (O’Reilly and Pondy, 1979; Zenger and Laurance, 1989) has established that demographic factors such as age, gender, race, occupation, and ethnicity affect the communication process. Unfortunately, many communications board members receive are ineffective simply because those who send them know very little about the personal or demographic characteristics of those receiving the message.

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In Search of a Knowledge Base to Guide Program Development in Educational Leadership

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JOHN C. DARESH1

ABSTRACT: Recently, the Executive Committee of the University Council for Educational Administration established a task force to study the issue of finding an appropriate knowledge base for educational administration (UCEA Review, 1991). This event underscores the fact that the field of educational administration is currently going through a period of great introspection. Simply stated, the goal is to improve practice, but that improvement must be based on a recognition of precisely what is the nature of the field.

In this article, the search for a relevant knowledge base for the field of educational leadership is described. A number of potential sources for a knowledge base are identified. Finally, a newly-developed program in educational leadership at one university is presented to illustrate the way in which elements of the knowledge base have been incorporated into a new approach to the preparation of future school leaders.

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School Administrators: The Next Generation

ePub

MARILYN L. GRADY1 ,*

KRISTINE J. CARLSON2

BARBARA L. BROCK3

ABSTRACT: This study addressed the perceptions held by student teachers in Nebraska concerning administration as a career, their aspirations to become administrators, and the encouragement received by males and females to become administrators. A questionnaire was administered to 322 individuals who were student teachers during the Fall Semester of 1990, to determine whether they had considered careers in school administration and whether they had received encouragement to do so. Results indicated that most of the respondents considered administration to be a managerial role; leadership did not rank highly in the student teachers’ perceptions of administrators. Most of the respondents did aspire to become administrators at some point. More than one-half of the respondents had been encouraged to enter administration, but this encouragement did not appear to affect their decision. There were no differences reported for the amount of encouragement received by males and by females.

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The Courage to Be Creative

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FRANK W. LUTZ1

ABSTRACT: For thirty years the “theory movement” in educational administration pursued a logical positivistic paradigm and a goal of developing a “science” of administration. Since Kuhn (1962), that model has been challenged, but not until Weick (1976) did much appear in the literature of educational administration that took note of that challenge. Still, little “radical“ revision has taken place. This article suggests possible revision in both theory and practice of education based on post-positivistic thought.

Creativity is a necessary sequel to being. Furthermore, the word courage in my title refers to the particular kind of courage essential for the creative act. This is rarely acknowledged . . . and even more rarely written about. (Rollo May from The Courage To Create, 1975)

The purpose of this paper is to critique and set in context both theory and practice of education organizations, and in doing so, to express some of our/my biases. That statement sounds the warning with which these comments must be received.

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Long-Term Rural Superintendents: Characteristics and Attributes

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EDWARD W. CHANCE1

CHARLES BUTLER1

JOE LIGON2

RENDELL COLE3

ABSTRACT: This paper presents the results of a study of superintendents who have served in one rural school district for twelve years or more. Superintendents in twenty-four districts were identified and interviewed. The superintendents shared demographic information, insights into their school boards, and professional opinions as to the reasons for their longevity. Reasons for their success were a stable school board, open communication, hiring good employees, and working closely with the local community.

The role of the superintendent has changed dramatically over the years. Mirga (1985) stated that the position of superintendent has transformed from a fatherly, authority figure to a negotiator who primarily handles conflict. In other words, the time is gone when the superintendent simply ruled the school; now he/she constantly battles district employees and strives to stamp out fires of discontent before the district is engulfed. Gousha (1981) maintained that outside factors such as increased public access to government, more independent political activism, less deference to authority, and a loss of confidence in institutions and leaders have changed the role of the school superintendent. Regardless of the reason, today’s superintendency is quite different and perhaps more precarious than the role used to be.

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